Date number three had some anticipation surrounding it. As stated in previous posts, date number 3 is the good communicator, the one that seemed to get my attention and sustain it through every single email message by the questions he asked and his answers. He is also known as Mr. Knows Just What To Say and meeting him in person did not change that nickname. I guess you might be able to say he had somewhat of an unfair advantage from the previous two dates, because we had also been communicating through text messages. I guess sending great emails allowed him to reach the text messaging stage. So because we had been texting several days prior to our date, I woke up feeling a bit anxious about it all. I was nervous for several reasons. We seemed to be able to sustain a conversation very easily, but that was through text and email, what if that didn’t happen in person? What happens if he already created me as a certain type of person in his head and I wasn’t who he was expecting? What if I was building him up in my head too much? I was nervous one of us was going to let the other one down. I called a friend, someone I consider to be a great mentor in my life, and she reminded me of truth. She reminded me that God has this in control and that no matter the outcome for today, everything was going to be fine. God is not a God of anxiety. He is not a God of fear. I would be fine. I realized that the pressure I put on myself in my 20s was beginning to creep through into the “new 30s me.” I reminded myself why I was doing these 30 dates to begin with and that was because I didn’t want to have to analyze so much over one date. I could go, have fun, or possibly not have fun, but that didn’t mean that I had to figure out if he was the guy I wanted to marry after first meeting him. He knew I had 29 other suitors (that was what he called them), and he couldn’t expect me to fall in love with him on the first date either. So I quickly prayed, casting my anxiety to the Lord and then busied myself with household chores. I went and got my nails and eyebrows done. I know what you are thinking, “Wow this guy really did make an impression on her for her to get her nails done for it.” However this has been a normal Saturday occurrence over the past several years, even when I would just go home to have a date with my couch.
I started to catch on why this guy was Mr. Knows Just What To Say. He seemed to do his homework. Through our prior communication, he asked me what my top love languages were (http://www.5lovelanguages.com/). He also asked me if I had ever taken the Myers Briggs Personality Test and I had. So I passed on my personality type to him as well. I wouldn’t doubt if he did research on it. He seemed to be a very intellectual sort of guy. Which I didn’t know that I would like so much.
So, here we go, ready or not, I was about to meet my favorite so far.
He chose the zoo and the plan was to meet there at 3 in the afternoon. Due to all my anxiety, I arrived 15 minutes early and waited in the parking lot until I spotted him at 2:56 in the row behind me. I watched as he got out of his car and then I got out of mine. He didn’t see me get out, he wasn’t the one that had been sitting there for the past 10 minutes, scoping out every single car that arrived. I yelled, “Hey Stranger!” and waved. I’ve never called someone a stranger, that was literally a stranger to me, I found that amusing, not sure if he did. He walked over to me and I asked him how his drive in was. He lived over an hour and a half away and he said he had to stop twice to go to the restroom. I thought that was cute, because I could tell he was nervous. Right before I ever have to speak to a large crowd or do something where my nerves are in a bundle, I usually end up having to make several bathroom breaks. I didn’t share that with him though, I figured we should move on from the bathroom subject. As we walked into the zoo, he pulled out tickets that he had purchased ahead of time, very efficient I may add, I knew this guy literally thinks of everything.
We began walking around the zoo and gardens and at one point he turned to me and told me I wasn’t very photogenic. I looked at him with a squinty confused look on my face and he said, “You are way more beautiful in person than in your eharmony pictures.” Ummm, yeah point 37 for Mr. Intellect over here. After about two hours, I was hungry and ready for dinner and so we headed to a restaurant that I had chosen. Our conversation went in many directions, although the restaurant was loud and noisy. However, I was okay with that because after two hours of walking and talking at the zoo, I was ready for a bit of a break in conversation. I only could eat half of my meal, but that is normal, and so I quit eating. I noticed that he did too, which was surprising because normally I am used to the guy finishing their plate. During our dinner conversation he shared with me that he had been on a lot of first dates before, this guy is several years older than me, but that he had been the most nervous for this one. He had probably felt the anticipation too, like I had that morning. Thankfully, I had already given it to the Lord that morning, so my nerves were non-existent by the time I saw him. His nerves probably explains why he quit eating too. So here we are both with half eaten meals and the waitress keeps coming over and checking on us. Finally, I told him we should probably leave to clear the table for those waiting to be seated and he agreed. As I got up to leave I noticed my shoe’s sole was falling off. I showed him and he suggested we go get super glue to fix it. I liked that idea, because I was literally flopping all around in my shoe and could barely walk with it.
We found super glue at the grocery store around the corner from the restaurant and I picked it up. Halfway to the register, he took it out of my hand and I told him that he didn’t need to pay for it because it was for MY shoe after all. He insisted that he should, since it happened on “his watch.” How many points does he have now? I am not sure, I lost track. He glued the shoe for me back at the car and I suggested we go find a place to talk. Normally I would have suggested we could go get dessert somewhere, but with both of us not finishing our meals, I highly doubted he was willing to scarf down something else. I directed him to the river downtown and we ended the evening sitting on concrete steps staring out at the river. This is when I finally felt like his nerves began to fade, maybe it had something to do with the fact that as we talked we were side by side, instead of looking at each other. I heard somewhere, guys prefer that form of posture when communicating. At 8:30, I was ready to leave, my poor little behind was getting sore from sitting on concrete steps. I told him that, he smiled and we got up to leave. Now, thinking back on it, I feel a little guilty that I controlled the ending of each one of our activities. I was the one that suggested we leave the zoo at 5 to go eat, I was the one that said we should leave the restaurant and now I was the one ending our river talk time. I didn’t mean to take control, but in a way, I kinda like that he let me make those decisions.
He took me back to my car by the zoo and I told him that I had so much to thank him for. As I went through my list of thankfulness, he turned around and pulled out a small gift, neatly wrapped in green tissue paper (did I mention that I had told him my favorite color was green?) and handed it to me. I asked him if he wanted me to open it now or when I got home. He said I could wait until I got home. We both got out of his car and I started walking towards mine. I stopped to give him a hug before I got into the car. I knew that I was going to be the one to initiate the hug, because we had a conversation about how physical touch was one of my lowest love languages, so I knew he was going to give me some space. I think he was surprised by the hug, but it felt like the right thing to do. The ending was perfect, because again, nothing was discussed about when or if we would see each other again, and I got in my car and left.
I got home and opened up the small package and it was a book called “The Sacred Search.” He had already told me that he had finished reading that a few months ago and that it really helped him figure out what he wanted in a wife one day. In the middle of the book was a card where he wrote a personalized note. Part of it said, “I do pray that I get to see you again, but if not I wish you nothing but the absolute best and God’s blessings in your search.” I immediately texted him a thank you text for the gift. After about an hour, after he returned home, he texted back and said that he had a great time and would love the opportunity to spend time with me again, but that there was no pressure because he knew that he was just 1 of the 30 and that my time was limited. Perfect text. Perfect date.
Don’t ask me if I like him though. Don’t ask me if he could be Mr. Right. Because I don’t know. And I don’t need to know right now. That is what used to weigh me down before, so much that I would just talk myself out of dating altogether. I have a few other dates lined up in the coming weekends and I have already made some plans with friends and family for some weekends, so he is right, my time is limited. However, I texted him back and told him that I am sure we can work something out, if he could be patient with me. He wrote back and said he could and that he would wait 30 weeks if he had to.
So my answer to the infamous question about what if I find Mr. Right on a date, what would I do with the remaining dates? My answer is, I am not going to know if he is Mr. Right after one date. All I am going to know is if I had a great time and if there is potential chemistry. And if I did, and if there is, why not have him be 2 out of the 30 dates? I cannot say that I want my next 27 dates to be with him. I can only say that we might have been sitting in the chemistry room, with a potential spark. I need to take it date by date or else I will resort back to freaking myself out. He knows I am busy until the end of October, so we will see what happens from now until then.
27 dates and counting down. Until tomorrow.